Hilton Head vs. Myrtle Beach

Thinking about visiting those Carolina beaches? Well, it’s no wonder choosing between Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach is difficult. So, here’s the quick lowdown on each destination. Hilton Head is quieter, more luxurious, and has more natural beaches. Myrtle Beach, in contrast, is for casual beach vacationers. In other words, it’s more affordable but also has more party animal vibes than Hilton Head’s serene atmosphere. 
Hilton Head vs. Myrtle Beach

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Can’t seem to wrap your head around which destination is better? You’re comparing a beach-party destination (Myrtle Beach) to a peaceful, lavish beach destination (Hilton Head).

But wait. There’s still more on the table.

Both Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head promise travelers more than just beaches. Think amusement parks, waterslides, golfing, wildlife spotting, boat cruises, and more.

By the end of this guide, you’ll easily be able to decide which destination fits your vacation needs best.

Hilton Head

Right off the bat, first-time visitors will immediately notice Hilton Head’s upscale atmosphere. Some have even mentioned that the island often welcomes wealthy clientele.

But truth be told, there’s no need to keep up with the Joneses in Hilton Head. Because overall, what Hilton Head is best known for are its…

  • Relaxing vibes
  • Picturesque beaches
  • Diverse culinary offerings
  • Championship golf courses
  • Natural and unspoiled beauty
  • Convenient access to several cities

All you need to fit in Hilton Head is one thing: to slow down. Think waterfront live music, sunset dinners, scenic sailing, and easygoing beach life.

And here’s the real prize. Hilton Head is also well-known for its devotion to natural beauty. In other words, the community takes extra care of its surrounding environment. To the extent that buildings aren’t allowed to be higher than the tallest tree.

So, just how naturally preserved is Hilton Head? Picturesque beaches are a good example that proves this point.

Another good example to drive this point home? The pristine beauty of Hilton Head’s plantations. To give you some context, the island is divided into smaller communities, known as plantations.

Each plantation has its own unique style and beauty. But a more accurate description is a resort-like feel perfect for serenity-oriented vacationers. At each plantation, there are several resorts worth staying in. A few popular mentions include Sea Pines, Forest Beach, and Palmetto Dunes.

So, what else can you expect from the island? Aside from golf, beaches, and unspoiled surroundings, there are a couple more. Top-rated tennis resorts and over 200 restaurants that range from family-friendly to ritzy cuisine.

What about nightlife? It’s important to note that Hilton Head isn’t known to be a place for partying and dancing. There are a few casual spots, but it’s not loud or tacky.

All in all, Hilton Head is a place truly meant for vacationers looking to relax. Plus, it counts as a fantastic destination for honeymoons and weddings.

Now if you’re still looking for more reasons as to why Hilton Head is worth visiting, jump to the next section.

What Makes Hilton Head Unique?

Outdoor Adventure That Recharges You

The least obvious attraction of Hilton Head is its wide variety of outdoor activities. Many believe the island is strictly a haven for relaxing, but there are a few areas that challenge that belief.

Enter Hilton Head’s outdoor playground: Lowcountry.

For active vacationers, this is your spot. Even families and beach-oriented travelers will enjoy their time in Lowcountry.

What you’ll find here is a mix of inland and water activities. From soothing kayak excursions to 60-mile-long (10 km) trails if you’re up for serious hiking.

Looking for options? Canoeing, kayaking, and paddleboarding are perfect casual afternoon activities. In fact, kayaking activities in Hilton Head even come in different themes. Some involve watching a grand fireworks display while on a kayak or simply gliding along the waters during a full moon.

If you’re up for activities that will make you break a sweat, look to stand-up paddleboard yoga classes. For those in need of an activity that’s more adrenaline-racing, jet skiing and zip-lining are great options.

From there, make your way to Lowcountry’s dry regions and don’t miss out on these activities:

  • Island trail hiking
  • Bird and wildlife viewing
  • Biking along nature trails
  • Horseback riding along the beach

Granted, the activities you’ll find at Hilton Head don’t exactly scream “active junkie.” However, these activities pride on family-oriented fun and meditative recreations. Almost as if each activity feels like a hobby you look forward to after a long day at work.

Now, where exactly can you do these activities?

For biking, hiking, and even walking or jogging, there are two places you can’t go wrong with:

  • Audubon-Newhall Preserve
  • Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge

What these two natural landscapes offer are 60 miles (96.5 km) of leisure trails for hiking, bicycling, and jogging. Audubon-Newhall Preserve is also a haven for bird-watching. A few of the preserve’s most prized species are the large blue heron, cattle egret, and white ibis. With more than 200 species of birds here, you can do bird-watching while bicycling or jogging.

Plus, Audubon-Newhall Preserve features several easy walking trails for the whole family to do.

As for Pinckney Island National Wildlife Refuge? The total area is enormous, spanning 1,618.7 hectares (4,000 acres). While it’s perfect for nature and outdoor lovers who love to hike and bike, it’s also a fantastic fishing spot.

In addition, there’s a ton of wildlife you’ll see around the area too. A few worth mentioning include alligators, bobcats, white-tailed deer, and red foxes. Now, you don’t have to necessarily jog, bike, or hike here. You can always stroll along the pathway and enjoy the wildlife and birds that pass you by.

If it’s solitude and peace you want, either Pinckney Island or Audubon-Newhall is an excellent choice.

As for horseback riding along the beach, this activity is exclusive to one island: Daufuskie. From Hilton Head to Daufuskie, it’s a 45-minute ferry ride. The island is a private area and features a 3-mile-long (4.8 km) white, sandy shore for horseback riding.

Altogether, Hilton Head’s activities cater to a wide range of travelers. Be it families, honeymooners, groups, or even solo travelers. Should you find yourself having the urge to spend the day in peace or recharge, Hilton Head has much to offer.

Its Beaches, Attractions, and Cities Are All Within Close Reach

Hilton Head is a place full of natural wonder. And the best part of it all is they’re all easily accessible.

The island is home to seven beaches, with Coligny Beach being the leader in beauty among all. Soft white sand and gorgeous coastal surroundings are only half the reason why Coligny Beach wins so many hearts.

This world-famed beach is only a 5-minute drive from several hotels around the island. And for something even closer, many of the beaches in Hilton Head offer guests access to private beaches too. Just how close are these private beaches? Only steps away from your hotel room.

In fact, the Sonesta Resort is perched directly on the beach. As soon as you wake up, just take a few steps outdoors and you’ll feel the sand in your toes.

When it comes to popular attractions in Hilton Head, many are so close by it’s easy to bike from one to another. If you prefer to put in a few more steps to hit your daily step goals, you’re more than welcome to. The temperate, mild climate and ocean breeze that cools you off as you’re walking along the shore is just perfect.

Last but not least, Hilton Head is less than 100 miles (161 km) away from cities like Charleston, Savannah, and Beaufort. In other words, it’s only a quick drive from one city to the other – about two to three hours. Want a quick change of pace and more things to do and see? Take a day trip to either city.

Beaufort is known for its charming atmosphere and get-away-from-it-all vibes. Charleston for honeymooners, foodies, and beach lovers. And Savannah for more natural beauty sightseeing, art museums, and its vibrant, chill nightlife.

Of course, Hilton Head is home to a lot of attractions that boast natural wonder too. The Sea Pines Forest Reserve, Coastal Discovery Museum, and Harbour Town are all fantastic places. Whether it’s to eat, shop, grab a photo op, see wildlife, or simply relax.

Altogether, Hilton Head makes it easy for kids and seniors to explore the island. Because everything is close by, Hilton Head easily ranks as one of the most family-friendly vacations too.

A Paradise for Golf and Tennis

Hilton Head features 30+ courses, with many reaching championship standards. One course, in particular, stands out: Harbour Town Golf Links, located at The Sea Pines Resort. Not only does it host the only PGA Tour Event in South Carolina, but it’s also a bucket list golf course renowned by golfers.

Now, Hilton Head’s golf courses aren’t just all about emerald greens and landscape beauty. Even experienced golfers have found many of Hilton Head’s courses a challenge. And that should come as no surprise. Seeing as how legendary golf architects Pete Dye, Jack Nicklaus, and Robert Trent Jones Sr. designed several courses.

In fact, Hilton Head ranks as the #10 golf destination among Golf Digest readers. To tee things off and for a proper golfing getaway, here are great courses to play in Hilton Head:

  • Arthur Links
  • Robber’s Row
  • George Fazio Course
  • Oyster Reef Golf Club
  • Golden Bear Golf Club
  • Heron Point by Pete Dye
  • Brigantine/Clipper Course
  • Robert Trent Jones Course

Note that all these courses are public golf courses that come with their respective fees. However, other courses are private, such as the Jack Nicklaus Course, Long Cove Club, and Hampton Hall Golf Course. As it stands, there are 10 private golf courses and 30 public courses in Hilton Head.

With regards to tennis, Hilton Head has over 500 courts. What’s more, Hilton Head is home to eight of the top 100 tennis camps and resorts in the world. From award-winning facilities to tennis clubs led by Stan Smith, Hilton Head is a dream come true for tennis players.

You’ll Never Go Hungry

Hilton Head is easily a top-notch foodie destination, apart from its beaches, golfing, and leisurely activities.

The island boasts more than 250 restaurants, ranging from local specialties to high-end dining. Pastry lover? There are dozens of bakeries to choose from. Seafood fanatic? Fresh catches of the sea are a common cuisine theme. Not to mention, the oysters are to die for.

If you’re more of a get-to-know-the-local-food tourist, you’ll fall in love with Hilton Head’s farmer’s markets. There, you’ll find the best of the best local food sampling. And without a doubt, you’re not leaving any of these markets empty-handed. So, bring some extra bucks to make the most out of your farmers’ market experience.

What’s being sold in Hilton Head’s Farmers’ Markets? Everything from free-range rabbit and handmade sausage to fresh produce and cookies & bread.

Watch out for the Farmers Market in Bluffton too. Aside from your usual carnivorous meat selections, the Bluffton Farmers Market sells a wide range of specialty items. These include chutney, jams, galettes, granola, loose tea blends, spices, fresh pasta & sauces, and more. There are even smoothie boosters sold here.

And in case you want something on the spot, you’ll be overwhelmed with so many options. Curries, dumplings, brick-oven pizza, gumbo, shrimp, BBQ, and tons of seafood.

There’s always something brewing in the kitchens at Hilton Head. And if you thought the hundreds of restaurants were enough to keep you from getting hungry, there’s still more on the menu.

Every year, Hilton Head hosts food and wine festivals sure to impress everyone’s palate. You’ve already heard about the Farmers’ Market, right? Well, think of them as teaser festivals for what’s to come. One of the most popular and sought-after festivals by locals and tourists is the Hilton Head Oyster Festival.

Now, the Oyster Festival doesn’t only serve fresh oysters. Other succulent dishes served at the festival include chili, pulled pork, and seafood chowder.

Finally, Hilton Head is also popular for its Wine & Food Festival and Tap Takeover Tuesdays. Every third Tuesday of every month and from 4 to 6 pm, you can enjoy special craft beer offers. As for the Wine & Food Festival, this happens in Hilton Head during the 3rd and 4th weeks in March. Not only will you be able to taste excellent wine, but also dishes prepared by the region’s culinary leaders.

Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach, a city also known for its beaches like Hilton Head, is the busier, livelier city. Unlike Hilton Head’s laid-back atmosphere, Myrtle beach offers more to do away from the beach.

Golfing is one of those things. And so is shopping, partying, and enjoying the city’s amusement parks. As a matter of fact, the city is well known to be a popular choice for active vacationers and partygoers. Because really, there’s always something to do in Myrtle Beach past sundown.

A major highlight of visiting Myrtle Beach? Its entertaining shows and live performances. Some even refer to Myrtle Beach as “East Branson” because it hosts a variety of shows several times a day. There’s no doubt any traveler would enjoy the theater performances in Myrtle Beach.

Although it is widely marketed as an entertaining, bustling city, there are a few hidden gems to note too. South of Myrtle, specifically Pawley’s Island and Garden City, features an easygoing ambiance.

That’s right. Travelers who want to escape the noise and thrilling nightlife of Myrtle Beach can do so in either of the two places mentioned. Pawley’s Island is very quiet, family-oriented, and completely laid-back.

Garden City is also less touristy and has a limited number of high-rise buildings. The best part about staying in Garden City is having direct access to the beach.

Last but not least, North Myrtle hits the spot for sunseekers. If you’ve come to Myrtle Beach for its beaches, head straight to North Myrtle.

There, you’ll find the ideal jaunt of what a South Carolina beach vacation feels like. Not to mention, there are several great golf courses and restaurants nearby too. Looking for golf course suggestions? Head to True Blue and Caledonia. And for the whole family, there are dozens of mini golf courses around the city.

Overall, Myrtle Beach’s charm is its variety of options. From outdoor activities and gorgeous beaches to entertaining shows in the evening. In addition, it’s perfect for budget-conscious travelers too.

What Makes Myrtle Beach Unique?

Broadway at the Beach

Now, you might be thinking, isn’t Broadway at the Beach just one specific area in Myrtle Beach? While you’re 100% right about it being an area, there’s also one tiny detail worth mentioning. And it’s that Broadway at the Beach is a hub for beaches, shopping, dining, and entertainment.

The entire area alone covers 350 acres (141 ha) of land. And it’s home to the following:

  • SkyWheel
  • 100 shops
  • Three theaters
  • 20+ restaurants
  • Dozens of attractions

That’s not all. There are water parks, go-kart tracks, mini golf courses, arcades, and even mazes. Yes, mazes for the whole family to enjoy, also referred to as the Escape Games in Myrtle Beach.

Then, make your way to the WonderWorks amusement park for a science-filled educational experience. Apart from riding the 360-degree virtual roller coaster, you can also opt for a laser tag competition.

Once you’ve explored most of the attractions in the area, you can easily walk to a café to relax. Or better yet, dine at several of the restaurants in the area, many of which are also family-friendly, by the way.

Overall, Broadway at the Beach offers tourists a one-stop shop. Whether it’s spending the day with family full of activities, relaxing at a café, shopping, or sightseeing.

Even better, Broadway at the Beach is also especially worth visiting at night. With three theaters in the area, it’s worth watching at least one show in Myrtle Beach. Because after all, the city is popular and highly renowned for its theatrics and live performances.

A Wallet-Friendly Destination

Myrtle Beach is the kind of vacation where you don’t have to splurge to enjoy everything it offers. From affordable accommodations and dining options to getting around the city.

It’s easy to find hotels and resorts with rates under $100 a night. Note that these typically include free breakfast and access to amenities like water parks and lazy rivers. And the best part of it all? Several hotels are close to a ton of attractions, so you can save on transport costs.

If you want to save even more, consider booking a condo during your stay in Myrtle Beach. You can save between 40% to 50% on lodging expenses compared to beachfront resorts.

Even the restaurants in Myrtle Beach provide great bang-for-buck value. Places like Johnny D’s Waffles, Nacho Hippo, and River City Café all offer wallet-friendly prices. That being said, these restaurants are only a few examples. Myrtle Beach has nearly 1,800 restaurants all around the city! That means finding a budget-friendly deal isn’t a problem at all.

Now, what about activities? Mini golf parks are one of the most affordable and family-friendly activities you can do. If you want variety, Broadway at the Beach is your best option. There are several attractions in the area that don’t cost a dime.

Of course, some attractions like Ripley’s Aquarium and several museums have an entrance fee. But these are all small prices to pay that won’t break your wallet. Other attractions like Helicopter Rides cost only USD 20 to see the entire city from above. Pier 14 also offers affordable rates for fishing – about USD 7. Plus, buying bait is affordable too.

Finally, don’t miss your opportunity to experience Myrtle Beach’s attractions that come free of charge. Some worth mentioning include:

  • Garden City Pier
  • Barefoot Landing
  • The Market Common
  • Broadway at the Beach
  • Murrells Inlet MarshWalk
  • Myrtle Beach Art Museum
  • Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens

Caters to a Wide Range of Travelers

Myrtle Beach is often seen as a party destination, a place that supposedly suits active partiers. On that note, it’s worth mentioning that the city also favors singles or anyone looking to make new friends.

But as far as active nightlife goes, Myrtle Beach also suits families, young couples, and golfers. Travelers looking for a mix of R&R and an active vacation will find it at Myrtle Beach, without a doubt.

With so many beautiful piers and oceanfront landmarks, finding a spot to kick back and relax is an easy find. But if you really want to get away from it all, Pawley’s Island and Garden City are fantastic options.

Of course, nightlife and entertainment are also one of the highlights of visiting Myrtle Beach. So whether you’re after a party vacation or an entertaining trip the whole way, Myrtle Beach hits the spot.

Bars, clubs, and pubs, you name it. Myrtle Beach offers party animals a lot of options to enjoy the night. Two of the best places for great nightlife? Fat Tuesdays and Broadway at the Beach. Fat Tuesdays offers the slushiest and strongest cocktails, while Broadway at the Beach for bar-hopping.

Travelers seeking an entertaining evening yet mellower scene will love Myrtle Beach’s live shows. The Pirates Voyage Dinner & Show and Carolina Opry are some of the best in the city.

All in all, Myrtle Beach offers plenty for active vacationers, partiers, easygoing travelers, and beach lovers. On that note, the city features a wide variety of water sports activities like jet skiing, parasailing, dolphin tours, and more. As for beach lovers, North Myrtle will feel like home.

60 Miles of Sand to Enjoy and Choose From

With a 60-mile (97 km) coastline and award-winning beaches, it’s no wonder Myrtle Beach sees 18 to 20 million tourists annually. 60 miles of coastline is already appealing enough, especially for travelers in need of a sun-drenched vacation. But the cherry on top is truly Myrtle Beach’s award-winning beaches.

Cherry Grove ranked 11th as one of the top US beaches. And it was even mentioned in the Tripadvisor Traveler Choice Awards. Surfside Beach claimed a spot as one of the top 10 Best Family Beaches by Family Vacation Critic. Whereas Atlantic Beach didn’t garner awards but continues to draw crowds for its beautiful coastal views.

As a matter of fact, Atlantic Beach is a popular wedding destination. Then there’s Litchfield Beach and North Myrtle Beach perfect if you’re after quainter and peaceful vibes.

At night, North Myrtle Beach offers live music & dancing, along with several spots for a chill evening activity. Barefoot Landing and Crooked Hammock Brewery are the most popular options.

As for Litchfield Beach, active travelers will also enjoy the outdoor activities in the area. Although Litchfield is ideal for relaxing activities like reading a book or napping, you’re not limited to those.

You can do wakeboarding, banana boat rides, waterskiing, tubing, surfing, and more. For large groups or families? Speedboat excursions and exploring the campgrounds are great options.

All in all, Myrtle Beach’s beaches are perfect for families and beach lovers. Along with laid-back vacationers, couples, seniors, and even those who want a semi-active beach vacation.

Which Is Better – Myrtle Beach or Hilton Head?

Between Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head, it truly depends on how active you want your vacation to be.

Hilton Head is a more low-energy, easygoing vacation. So if you prefer a vacation where you can lay back, chill, and mostly relax throughout, Hilton Head is the better choice.

Plus, it’s more family-oriented, especially if you’re traveling with younger kids because mostly everything is within close reach, it shouldn’t be a problem for families and even seniors to get around.

Golfers and avid tennis players will also love Hilton Head overall. With hundreds of courts and dozens of courses, staying in Hilton Head is a worthwhile vacation.

In contrast, Myrtle Beach offers a high-energy atmosphere, from outdoor activities and tours to nightlife. It’s safe to say you’ll never run out of things to do if you’re visiting the city for the first time.

Not to mention, it’s better for travelers who are looking to party overall. Finally, if your idea of a vacation centers around beaches, evening entertainment, and shopping, Myrtle Beach wins. Especially for vacationers who love watching theater and live shows on stage. If that’s what excites you most, Myrtle Beach is definitely the place to visit.

Now, if you’re looking for more details like which has better beaches, weather, prices, and so on, don’t worry. That’s what the next sections will cover.


Which Is Prettier – Myrtle Beach or Hilton Head?

When it comes to natural, unspoiled beauty, Hilton Head is the prettier destination. The local community places a major emphasis on preserving the island’s natural landscape. And over the years, they’ve done a spectacular job at maintaining the island’s spectacular beauty.

Be it beaches or state parks, Hilton Head wins hands down when it comes to beatific charm. In fact, neon signs aren’t even allowed at Hilton Head. Plus, buildings aren’t allowed to be taller than the tallest tree.

Granted, Myrtle Beach is also gorgeous in its own regard. But it can’t compare to Hilton Head’s virgin-island charm.

Is Myrtle Beach Cheaper Than Hilton Head?

Myrtle Beach is more affordable to visit than Hilton Head. Accommodations and food are perhaps two of the biggest cost factors for many travelers. And in that regard, Myrtle Beach offers a ton of price-friendly options.

Even resorts with beachfront access are cheaper in Myrtle Beach than they are in Hilton Head. But that said, Hilton Head is not without its price-friendly accommodations. The island also offers several budget-friendly deals when it comes to food.

It’s just that Hilton Head offers more fine dining and upscale choices than Myrtle Beach. Plus, Hilton Head has a lavish resort-like feel to it. Even its shopping opportunities lean more toward the affluent side.

So, in other words, while there are price-friendly options, expect to spend more than in Myrtle Beach. Compare meal prices between the two destinations and you’ll see a significant difference.

In Myrtle Beach, a meal for two at a midrange restaurant costs USD 60. Whereas in Hilton Head, it can easily cost about USD 100.

For accommodations, a regular room at a good hotel in Myrtle Beach will cost you USD 140 per night. On Hilton Head Island, it costs around USD 206.

Looking at these two sets of data alone, it’s clear that Myrtle Beach is the more affordable destination. However, if you’re spending a lot on alcohol and theater entertainment, Myrtle Beach is equally as costly.

Myrtle Beach vs. Hilton Head Weather

Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head have similar weather year-round. On average, Myrtle Beach has 218 sunny days every year, while Hilton Head has 215.

Both offer mild, temperate climates similar to what you’d find in any place with tropical weather. As for snow, both barely have any, but it does snow occasionally in Myrtle Beach. And only in minimal amounts.

The best time to visit Myrtle Beach is during spring (March to June) and fall (September to November). These months offer the best weather throughout the year. As for Hilton Head, the winter season (December to March) will have the most pleasant weather.

Rainfall in both destinations is also similar. However, Myrtle Beach sees more rainfall per year. On average, Myrtle Beach sees 51.9 inches (131.8 cm) of rainfall annually. Whereas Hilton Head gets about 48.1 inches (122.2 cm) of rain every year.

Which Is Warmer – Hilton Head or Myrtle Beach?

Hilton Head is a slightly warmer destination due to its geographical location. Since Hilton Head is farther south on the coastline, the island’s temperatures are slightly higher.

On average, Hilton Head’s average temperature is 3 to 4 degrees higher than Myrtle Beach’s per month.

Take February as an example. For the month, Myrtle Beach’s highest average temperature is 58° F (14.4° C) while Hilton Head’s is at 62° F (16.7° C).

For the lowest, Myrtle Beach’s temperature can be as low as 42° F (5.6° C) in February. While Hilton Head’s lowest in February reaches 45° F (7.2° C).

Hilton Head or Myrtle Beach for Family Vacation?

Both Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach are family-friendly destinations. But where the two destinations differ most is the crowd it caters to.

Myrtle Beach is better for families traveling with older kids. Hilton Head, on the other hand, is better if you’re traveling with younger kids.

For families, Myrtle Beach has several amusement parks, entertaining shows, and vibrant nightlife. This means it’s better suited to older kids, especially if you’re after a livelier vacation overall.

Hilton Head, in contrast, suits families with younger kids because of its relaxing and chill atmosphere. Not to mention, most of its activities lean more towards biking, hiking, and horseback riding. These are all leisure activities that families with younger kids can do together.

Is Hilton Head or Myrtle Beach Better for Kids?

Hilton Head is generally the better destination for kids. Mostly because its activities offer more options when it comes to soft adventure. Think bicycling or horseback riding along the beach and easy hiking trails even kids hike through.

Plus, Hilton Head has more sightseeing, be it taking a short day trip to another city or bird/wildlife watching. For instance, Beaufort and Savannah are only 50 minutes away from Hilton Head. Plus, kids who enjoy playing golf or tennis will undoubtedly love Hilton Head more.

For kids that prefer a more active vacation, Myrtle Beach may be the better choice. It’s also worth noting that Hilton Head has been named one of the most family-friendly destinations in the US.

Which Beach Is Better – Myrtle Beach or Hilton Head?

Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head feature beautiful and family-friendly beaches. But which has better beaches? It mostly depends on the overall beach vibes you’re looking for.

Hilton Head offers a more laid-back, relaxing, and secluded beach atmosphere. Myrtle Beach’s beach vibes are livelier and have more opportunities for water sports activities. Both destinations also offer calm waters, so it’s safe for kids to swim safely in.

Another difference that stands out is natural beauty. Hilton Head’s beaches are more picturesque, maintaining their natural, pristine beauty. Myrtle Beach’s coastline is gorgeous as well but tends to be more crowded.

If you prefer more beach activities and aren’t worried about peace and privacy, Myrtle Beach takes the lead. It’s also safe to say that Myrtle Beach’s beaches have a more energetic vibe than Hilton Head’s.

Hilton Head doesn’t offer as many beach activities but offers unspoiled beauty. One of the most popular beach activities in Hilton Head is biking. In addition, the beaches in Hilton Head are more relaxing, peaceful, and offer travelers more privacy.

Last but not least, you’ll find more public beaches in Myrtle Beach. Hilton Head offers a couple of public beaches but also has private beaches. This also means you’re less likely to run into large crowds on Hilton Head’s beaches even during the holiday season.

Hilton Head vs. Myrtle Beach for Golf

Either Hilton Head or Myrtle Beach are great places for golfing. Be it beginner, advanced, or senior golfers.

When it comes to value, Myrtle Beach takes the lead. There are over 90 courses in Myrtle Beach, and that still doesn’t include minicourses for kids. Hilton Head, offers at least 50 courses, with tee times and prices higher than the fees in Myrtle Beach.

However, if you’re looking at championship-standard courses, Hilton Head is the clear winner. Harbour Town Golf Links is a bucket list course for many golfers. And it’s hosted the PGA Tour too. No Myrtle Beach golf course has ever hosted any PGA Tour.

On that note, several of Hilton Head’s golf courses scare even the most skilled players in the world.

Either way, you’re still getting massive value in whichever destination you choose to play golf in. If you’re an avid golfer looking for a challenge, Hilton Head is the better choice. In addition, Hilton Head is popular for its top-notch courses and offers more selection in that category.

As for Myrtle Beach, you have a broader range of golf courses to choose from. Not to mention, many are affordable to play in too.

Now, which destination has the most family-friendly golf courses? Neither really. Both offer mini golf courses for kids and courses for beginners. Whichever you choose, it’s still a win-win situation.

Where Is Myrtle Beach Compared to Hilton Head?

Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head are both located in South Carolina. However, compared to Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head is in the farthest southern part of South Carolina.

Think of Hilton Head as a barrier island while Myrtle Beach as a city of South Carolina.

How Far Is Hilton Head From Myrtle Beach?

Hilton Head is approximately 3 hours and 40 minutes from Myrtle Beach. There are two routes you can take from one destination to the other:

  • Via I-95 N
  • Via N Hwy 17 and US-378 E

Myrtle Beach to Hilton Head

The best way to get from Myrtle Beach to Hilton Head is via car. Driving from one destination to the other is the most common and cheapest option too.

Now, you might be wondering, are there any alternatives? You have one: via plane. Taking a plane from Myrtle Beach to Hilton Head is the most expensive. The average ticket alone costs around USD 200. In fact, traveling via plane takes about the same time as you would via car.

Because flights typically include a 1-hour layover, your total flight time would be 3 hours and 30 minutes.

In some cases, you might’ve heard a few who traveled via bus. However, this is only possible if you take the bus from Savannah city to Hilton Head. So, technically, you’d still have to travel from Myrtle Beach to Savannah. The bus from Myrtle Beach to Savannah takes about 7 hours and 40 minutes.

From Savannah to Hilton Head, the journey only takes less than an hour. While buses are an economical option, it also takes 2x as long as you would via car. Not to mention, you’ll have to travel to another city before reaching Hilton Head.

Either way, it depends on your vacation preferences. If you don’t mind a long travel time and prefer to explore, the bus route might be a good option for you. But if you want to reach Hilton Head from Myrtle Beach as quickly as possible, it’s better to drive there.